Security Council Extends Mandate of UN Office in East Timor
   2006-06-21 06:03:30       Xinhua
The United Nations Security Council Tuesday renewed for two months the mandate of the UN Office (UNOTIL) in East Timor, a tiny young island state in Southeast Asia.
  
The 15-nation council unanimously adopted a resolution extending the mandate of UNOTIL until Aug. 20, with a view to planning for the strengthening of the UN's future role in the country.
  
UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan was requested to report back to the council until Aug. 7 on the world's role after UNOTIL's mandate expires.
  
The resolution condemned continuing acts of violence against people and destruction of property in the wake of clashes sparked by the dismissal in April of nearly 600 soldiers, a third of East Timor's total armed forces.
  
The UN presence in East Timor, officially known as Timor-Leste, has been drawn down since the original UN Transitional Administration (UNTAET) was set up in 1999 to usher the country to independence in 2002.
  
UNTAET was then replaced with a downsized operation, the UN Mission of Support in East Timor (UNMISET), which, in turn, was succeeded by the current residual UN Office in Timor-Leste.
  
The council welcomed the initiatives taken by Annan and his special envoy, Ian Martin, to asses the situation on the ground following the violence.
  
It also expressed its "appreciation and full support" for the deployment of international security forces in response to the request of the Timorese government following the deadly riots by dismissed soldiers.
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